Lauren took her last drink on November 17, 2018. This is her story.
On today’s episode Paul talks about the ‘how’, and says not to worry about the how you are going to quit drinking. Once you know the ‘why’ you want to quit drinking the how always solves itself.
If you need help coming up with the why, most likely you have an encyclopedia of evidence behind you. It could be the intense emotional dips, depression, anxiety, letting yourself or those you love down. Put that why to work in your favor.
[13:30] Paul introduces Lauren.
Lauren is 38 years old. She lives in Sharon, Mass, and is adjunct faculty at a university in Boston in their School of Social Work. Lauren is married and has 3 children. For fun Lauren enjoys spending time outside, listening to LIVE music and hanging out with friends.
[15:47] Give us a background on your drinking.
Lauren says alcohol set up shop in her life while she was attending the University of Mass. In 2007 while she was finishing up her Masters in Social Work, she came across a binge drinking scale and realized that she had surpassed all female scales and was binge drinking like a man. This was the first time the Lauren felt, in her gut, that something might be wrong.
Instead of listening to this bodily cue Lauren pushed it away and ignored it.
In 2009 Lauren met her wife and saw a life she wanted and made some changes in terms of her drinking.
[19:00] Talk to me about those changes that you made?
Lauren says she just naturally toned it down a little bit. Her partner had children so they started doing more family things. In 2011 they were married. Lauren says that, at this time, her drinking was progressing and taking up more and more space in her life.
In 2013 there was a hard stoop in Lauren’s drinking, during her pregnancy, and she gave birth to their daughter. Even though there was this break in her drinking things picked up right where she left off.
[20:25] What happens next?
Lauren is a stay at home mom and her drinking escalates. She wasn’t isolating, she joined a mom’s group, and really didn’t think she had a drinking problem because she wasn’t drinking during the day. Lauren says that she started using drinking as a reward. She was blacking out more frequently, her relationships started suffering and Lauren says that, clearly, her addiction had the upper hand.
[21:40] When did you start to realize there was a problem?
November 20, 2018, they got a phone call, one that you never hope to receive. Lauren’s stepson exited his car on a busy roadway and was struck by an oncoming vehicle. They soon learned that his injuries were far too significant for treatment and had to prepare to say goodbye. All the emotions and feelings she had been dousing in alcohol over the years came to the surface.
[23:40] What happened on November 20th?
Lauren says she somehow allowed all those emotions in fully and was unexplainably present in that hospital room. As the hours passed, she began to notice that along with all the pain and sadness in that hospital room there was something beautiful happening. Lauren says she felt gratitude, and felt it in every fiber of her body.
[30:50] What happened after that first AA meeting?
Lauren say she stuck it out with AA and is still working the steps and feels that there is great value to the steps.
[31:30] What was life like after that?
Lauren says the first weeks were really hard, but that all her relationships improved.
[37:38] Talk to us about your experience with the breathwork session we had at the RE Bozeman Retreat.
Lauren says she is glad she didn’t know anything about breathwork prior to the session so she just followed directions and was breathing like they said to. Lauren experienced her stepson, Michael, visiting and talking to her during the session.
[48:00] What’s on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?
Travel and showing our daughter the world.
[49:00] Rapid Fire Round
- What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?
That it’s not about alcohol anymore.
- What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?
The fact that I have memories. Everyday with my family is memorable.
- What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?
- What are some of your favorite resources on this journey?
Podcasts…Recovery Elevator, Recovery Happy Hour, and I do a lot of reading on The Temper.
- And what parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?
You’re worth it. You can do it.
You might need to ditch the booze if…
You add Tito’s to your spiked seltzer.
Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020
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Resources mentioned in this episode:
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“Recovery Elevator – It All Starts From the Inside Out. We can do this.”